Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Technique Tuesday - ZAP!

It is midterm exam time here, which means lots of review. Especially for the AP Computer Science class I try to build in plenty of time to do multiple choice practice.

Not my Board - it's from Mathastrophe 
This year I am trying a new game - ZAP.

Directions can be found here.

Teams of students play against each other. Everytime a team gets a question correct they pick a ZAP card out of one of the envelopes. The cards say things like "Steal 2 points from one other team", "Add Two Points to your Score" and "ZAP!" where you lose all points.

The advantage to this is it keeps all the teams scores pretty close. This is my main rule for classroom games - Close scores = engaged students. You've had that experience right? Your team is getting beaten badly, how long do you really keep playing? If all the team's scores are with in 2-3 points everyone is envolved. When one team starts gaining a huge lead it means everyone else is pretty tuned out.

For AP we'll use review MC questions from the Barron's review book.

In my imaginary free time I would redo the cards with things like "MOD your score by 5" and "Score ++".

Here's a similar game called Bazinga that also includes this like "Randomly Switch a Member  with Another Team", "Randomly have a player from the winning team go to the losing team" and "Take half of all the other team's points". I like the idea of switching kids around, not so sure about the last one. Seems to violate my rule of "keep the game pretty close ando the kids stay interested".

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